'I feel blessed to know Shelby Ballantine and her immense heart. In the horse world there are lots of people who carry the title of trainer or instructor. But not all can teach. Teaching is an art; One that comes from passion, intuition and empathy. Shelby is a master of teaching students of the four and two legged varieties. She discovers their strengths, and uses them to fuel the overcoming of their weaknesses. A certain mark of the love with which she teaches is to see her students: happy, knowledge seeking, friendly, loving, respectful and skilled horseman of all ages and stages.'
-Carrie Cranston, 4H Leader and Horse Show Judge
Clinician and Trainer
'I have known Shelby Ballantine for almost 10 years, as a veterinarian and a fellow horsewoman. I can honestly say, any farm would be lucky to have Shelby as a part of their team. She is incredibly hardworking, responsible, and dedicated. She holds herself and her students to a very high standard of horsemanship and always puts the horses first. Both her personal and training horses are always treated well, she is very knowledgeable about their health and conscientious in their care. Shelby's horses benefit from her attention to preventative care and while she is very proficient at providing first aid, she never hesitates to call if veterinary care is needed. It is a pleasure to work with Shelby and her horses and she would be an asset to any program.'
-Tammy McNamara, DVM
'It is with great pleasure that I recommend Ms. Ballantine as one of the finest horse trainers, instructors and human beings that I have been privileged to know. I have worked with many trainers including Denny Emerson, Carol Lavell, Bill Woods, Bill McMullin, and Sally Swift and Ms. Ballantine stands out for her well rounded expertise, care, thoughtfulness and positive energy. Ms. Ballantine has been assisting me with my horses since 2010. I continue to work with her because of her exceptional abilities to understand both the horse and the rider as well as her dedication and exemplary commitment to the welfare of the horses. Her intelligence, compassion, and insightfulness are uplifting and inspirational. I currently commute 40 miles to work with Ms. Ballantine, despite having a full time job and 10 horses to care for at home. Additionally, I have recommended Ms. Ballantine to many of my friends and family who also find that their spirits lift when they are around her.'
-Marie Wargo, Doctorate of Clinical Psychology, LMHC, CADAC
CHA Level 4 English; CHA Level 2 Western
'I have watched Shelby’s teaching and riding skills blossom over the years. She has taken many horses of all types and backgrounds and turned them into better horses by addressing behavior problems with an excellent conditioning and training program. She is patient, methodical, consistent and intuitive. She is able to look at each horse as an individual and devise the perfect program for that horse. Her students benefit from the same dedication and intuitiveness that she brings to her horses. She is able to take children and adults that range from complete beginners to life long horse people and figure out just what they need to further their riding abilities. Her teaching encourages a love for the whole horse and the lifestyle that accompanies being a true horseperson as opposed to just a rider. The children that come to her barn learn so much more than how to ride. They learn that responsible, day after day work, caring for an animal brings wonderful results. They develop partnerships with the horses and friendships
with each other that will last a lifetime.'
-Cathy Drumm, Clinician
'I have known Shelby for almost three years now. My daughter Hannah joined one of her camps and absolutely loved it. Shelby made Hannah’s first experience with horses such a positive one that we now spend three to five days a week at the barn. It is like Hannah’s home away from home. Shelby has taught Hannah and myself so much over the past three years. When we go to the barn it's not just lessons on how to ride a horse, but life lessons and experiences that we gain when we are with Shelby. She has taught us that hard work and dedication pays off, challenge yourself, have high expectations, when you have setbacks don't give up… always look for the up side in every situation.'
-Elisha Boisvert, parent of youth student
'From experience, being a client of Shelby’s was one of the best decisions I made. We sent my daughter for lessons and her horse for a few months of training the past two years. I noticed a big change in my daughter, she connected right away with Shelby because of her personality and the fun way she teaches. Also, sending our mare to her was great because Shelby connected with her right away with her too. She taught both my daughter and our mare to work together as a team and be confident with each other. This had wonderful results, giving my daughter and her horse a new, exciting, and safe
curriculum to learn together.'
-Tara Taylor, parent of youth student
'When I decided to ‘restart’ my equestrian journey, I was so lucky to have found Shelby to be my guide. She does so much more than just provide riding lessons – she is a master trainer of all aspects of horsemanship. Shelby does not have a pre-packaged process to be applied to all students at the same pace. Instead, she is prepared for each lesson with a well thought out goal completely customized for what I and my horse need to work on. However, Shelby is always quick to adjust the plan when she perceives that we need to work on something different that day or even just that moment. Her insights and intuition are truly amazing. And it is never just about me or my horse, but both of us. '
-Pamela Lent, adult student
Shelby is truly “one of a kind” not only in her ability to communicate with learners of all ages but with the horses as well. We recall our daughter’s first lesson, from the moment we met Shelby our fears vanished and we knew we had truly found the right person to guide our daughter through her journey of exploring horsemanship. In fact, this journey has evolved and now includes our entire family. Shelby is patient, calm, and has the innate ability to work with riders and horses from all levels of experience. She sets clear expectations for her students in terms of understanding the importance of safety and respect when working with their horse. She has a gentle way to correct her students, young and old, while still building confidence within them and challenging them to move out of their comfort zone to grow as riders. The level of respect that Shelby has earned from her students and their families is admirable and sets her above the others. She has taught our family so many invaluable lessons that go far beyond riding horses and the imprint she has left on our children’s lives is remarkable.
-Jill and Bobby Maynard, parents of youth students
Thank you Shelby for the lesson today. It was so informative, comfortable and enjoyable! I knew you were an awesome trainer, you are far more than that. I love the way you truly care about the horses and humans. You rock!
Can't wait for my next lesson. :-) ♥
-Toni, adult student